Lead times start getting longer After years of watching the lead time to plan and produce special events shrink painfully short, some event professionals see the tide turning. According to the latest online survey from Special Events, 42 percent of respondents say that lead times are starting to get longer. Twenty-one percent say they don't see much change, while 36 percent say that lead times continue to get shorter …

Mobile app coming for The Special Event 2012 Make your stay at The Special Event--Jan. 24-27 in Tampa, Fla.—more efficient and effective by using the show's free new mobile app, developed by CrowdCompass. The app--which should be available within two weeks--will have a host of features to help you plan your schedule before the conference, navigate the sessions and exhibitor hall, exchange contacts and more ...

Incentives and meetings begin to merge The line between incentive travel and meetings is blurring, according to preliminary findings from joint research conducted by our sister publication Corporate Meetings & Incentives and the Incentive Research Foundation. When asked what percentage of each day was spent at meetings during their incentive trip, almost half (49.6 percent) of survey respondents said more than 20 percent of each day, while 46.7 percent said less than 20 percent. "It seems a soft economy and tax implications have encouraged many planners to continuously create spaces for business content within incentive travel programs, said Melissa Van Dyke, president, Incentive Research Foundation. “Over a quarter of planners now have more than 40 percent of their event dedicated to business meetings." See the full story here.